The Aug. 3 (at 4 PM) and 5 (at noon and 3 PM) workshops are being held at the Ripley Grier Studios. Directed by Lynne Taylor-Corbett, the cast for the by-invitation-only presentations includes Leslie Alexander, Miche Braden, Joy Franz, Nora Mae Lyng, Pamela Meyers, Terri Ralston and Cheryl Stern.
Written by Marcia Milgrom Dodge and Anthony Dodge, the musical is based on the ideas of The Red Hat Society and features original music by Melissa Manchester, Pam Tillis, Kathie Lee Gifford, Carol Hall, Susan Birkenhead, Gretchen Cryer and Henry Krieger.
Hats, according to press notes, concerns a "49.999 year old woman who reluctantly faces the inevitable big five-O birthday until she meets several remarkable Red Hat Society women who show her about fun and friendship after 50."
The Ripley Grier Studios are located in Manhattan at 520 Eighth Avenue at 36th Street on the 16th floor.
* Hats!, The Red Hat Society Musical, which features a host of contributing songwriters, will begin performances at the Denver Civic Center Oct. 7 with an official opening scheduled for Oct. 11. Taylor-Corbett, who was nominated for Tony Awards for her direction and choreography of Swing!, will helm the production.
In a previous statement, producer Mitchell Maxwell said, "We are thrilled to be creating this musical. In doing so we have come to learn of the importance of The Red Hat Society and the message of joy and goodwill that they bring to their members. The organization has clearly touched a nerve in the public's imagination. These women are a powerful, positive force in today's world. Our musical will allow their message and spirit to reach greater numbers through this theatrical production."
The Red Hat Society, according to press notes, was created in 1998 when "Sue Ellen Cooper and a group of five friends, dressed in purple clothing and red hats met for afternoon tea. The word quickly spread, and over the past eight years, The Red Hat Society has become the fastest and largest growing women’s movement in the United States." In fact, the Society has formed more than 40,000 chapters around the world.
The New Denver Civic Center Theatre is located at 721 Sante Fe Drive in Denver, CO. Tickets, priced at $39.50, are available by calling (303) 309-3773 or by visiting www.ticketswest.com.